Association of colonic diverticula with colorectal adenomas and cancer

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Background and Objectives: Conflicting evidence is reported regarding any association between colonic diverticula with colorectal adenomas or cancer. The present study aimed to evaluate, in a cohort of Caucasian patients, the association between colonic diverticula and colorectal polyps and cancer. Materials and Methods: All consecutive patients undergoing colonoscopy at our institution were included in the study. The presence and location of diverticula, polyps, and cancers were recorded. Histologically, polyps were classified as adenoma (with low or high dysplasia), hyper-plastic, or inflammatory. The relative risk of the association of polyps and cancer with diverticula was assessed. Multiple logistic regression analyses, including age, sex, family history for colorectal cancer (CRC), and family history for diverticula, were carried out. Results: During the study period, 1490 patients were enrolled; 37.2% (n = 555) showed colonic diverticula or polyps or CRC (308 males, mean age 66 years). Particularly, 12.3% (n = 183) patients presented only diverticula, 13.7% (n = 204) only polyps or cancer, 11.3% (n = 168) both diseases, and 62.7% (n = 935) neither diverticula nor polyps and cancer. A total of 38 patients presented colorectal cancer, 17 of which had also diverticula. A significant increase in relative risk (RR 2.81, 95% CI 2.27–3.47, p < 0.0001) of colorectal adenoma and cancer in patients with colonic diverticula was found. At multivariate analysis, only diverticula resulted to be significantly associated with colorectal adenomas and cancer (Odds Ratio, OR 3.86, 95% CI 2.90–5.14, p < 0.0001). Conclusions: A significant association of colonic diverticula with colorectal adenoma or cancer was found. This implies that patients with colonic diverticula require a vigilant follow-up procedure for the prevention of colorectal cancer from those applicable to the general population.

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